05 Jan 2018 in Discover Japan
Every January, kimono-clad young people celebrate their coming of age – in often raucous style. Discover the festivities!
If you’re in Japan this January 8, expect to see large crowds of elegantly-dressed young people noisily parading the streets – and quite possibly enjoying their first legal taste of alcohol!
Every year, the second Monday of January is Seijin No Hi, Japan’s Coming of Age day. It’s a national holiday and a chance for 20-year-olds to celebrate reaching the country’s age of majority.
At 20, Japanese people can legally drink, smoke, go clubbing, gamble and get married without parental approval.
The day starts early – very early – for most Seijin No Hi participants. Many women spend hours getting their hair and makeup done at a beauty salon.
Then there’s the time-consuming business of donning the furisode. This special kimono, worn only by young unmarried women, is traditionally made of elaborately-decorated silk with sleeves up to a metre long.
Men tend to opt for Western-style suits or a dark kimono combined with samurai-style hakama trousers.
Once everyone is suited up, they head to the local city office for a formal ceremony, the Seijinshiki, with families and local officials. Then it’s party time! While some head to a shrine to celebrate, others prefer Tokyo Disneyland or just roaming the streets together.
Fancy experiencing Seijin No Hi yourself?
Stay at HOSHINOYA Tokyo and head to one of the city’s municipal offices for a peek of the festivities. And, while you may not be the right age to participate, you can still try on a kimono and learn how to wear it with decorum thanks to HOSHINOYA Tokyo’s special kimono workshops!